The Rum War (From 60 Minutes, in case you missed it – 12 minute video segment)

By January 4, 2017Member Update


Who makes the real Havana Club rum? And who owns the rights to sell the liquor under that famous brand name? Sharyn Alfonsi reports from Cuba


Source: CBS / 60 Minutes

Sharyn Alfonsi

January 2, 2017


The following script is from “The Rum War,” which aired on Jan. 1, 2017. Sharyn Alfonsi is the correspondent. Rome Hartman, producer.


The relationship between Cuba and the United States was stuck in pretty much the same bad place for half a century. But things have been changing at a dizzying pace in the last couple of years.


President Obama started the thaw in the relationship by re-establishing diplomatic relations and easing restrictions on travel. Now President-elect Trump is threatening to undo all those moves. And Fidel Castro, who spent 50 years poking his thumb in the eye of every American president, has died.


Whatever happens, there’s already a war underway that has the U.S. and Cuba on the rocks. It’s a war over rum, specifically, over two different versions of Havana Club rum and it’s as bitter as the Cold War ever was.


It’s a Tuesday afternoon at El Floridita in Old Havana, and we and lots of other visitors to Cuba are filing in and filling up at the bar that calls itself the “Cradle of the Daiquiri.” Head bartender Alejandro Bolívar needs to double up on rum bottles just to keep up with demand.